Urban Socio-Ecosystems Green Resilience

Urban Socio-Ecosystems Green Resilience

José G. Vargas-Hernández (University Center for Economic and Managerial Sciences, University of Guadalajara, Mexico)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-7998-4915-5.ch012
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This chapter is aimed to analyze the system of green resilience eco-urban land uses oriented in urban social-ecological systems. It reviews and analyses the relevant literature in green social-ecosystem resilience concept and presents a discussion in relation to the sustainable development and ecological sustainability. It further discusses and gives an in-depth overview of the urban social ecosystems as a working structural and functional unit, describes decision support tools that could be applied to sustainable green land uses and development, and offers some strategies for engaging in urban ecosystems, ecological sustainability and adaptive development. It is concluded that the urban land use that through the innovative pro-environmental solutions can, in a natural way, support the system of green resilience eco-oriented urban land uses in urban eco-systems and serve to improve the quality of life in the city.
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Human development have had a profound imprint on nature and coevolving ecosystems which had resulted in complex, economic-socio-ecological challenges for sustainability and future development. Sustainability is a set of goals combining social equity, economic viability and ecological integrity (Curwell, Deakin, & Symes, 2005; Jenks & Jones, 2010). Humankind alter the dynamics of ecosystem through anthropologic activities that change the atmosphere, climate, land surface, forest, sea, and waters. Humankind another organism’s survival is dependent on healthy and resilient social-ecological systems and sustainable environments.

Human wellbeing, economic growth and social development are dependent on the interrelationships between and within the regions and environmental sustainability (Arrow et al., 1995; Folke et al., 1998). Uncertainty, diversity and variability of social-ecosystem increases their inevitability reducing their capacity to cope with disturbance and change within functional groups in the adaptive capacity of ecosystems (Folke et al. 2002; Jackson et al. 2001; Scheffer et al. 2001).

Cities have been portrayed as predominantly monumental static architectural structures of increasing ecological complexity that change over the long term. Contextual and conceptual factors of urban change can be assembled into a framework of ecological urban design. Disturbances change the resilient capacity of nature to supply ecosystem services, degrading socioecological systems and leading to social and economic vulnerability. Inhabitants of urban areas pose a high impact on the ecosystems services with trade and consumption, claiming support in waste absorption, carbon emissions, residential water use, wood for industrial purposes (Folke et al., 1997, Grimm et al., 2008). Adverse human impacts on the social-ecosystem and the biosphere can be minimized through the use of resilient and sustainability environmental approaches such as environmental resources management, conservation biology, environmental and ecological economics, bio economics, green technology, etc.

According to Levin (1999), fragility is inherent to the ecosystems services on which human’s dependent and not nature. A global health control of the ecosystems, published in 2005 by The United Nations Millennium Ecosystem Assessment (MA) observed that the technological advancement is the main cause of the Earth’s ecosystem services degradation and are used unsustainably. The growing eco-deterioration is an impediment to combating poverty (Millennium Ecosystem Assessment (MA), 2005). If the ecosystem and natural resources are controlled by few people, they do for short-term economic gain.

Sustainability is the capacity of a system or process to be preserved, enhanced, upheld, or maintained. Sustainability is the capacity of a biological systems and processes to endure disturbances and remain vigorously diverse. Sustainability is the systematic combination of environmental science and sustainable development (Lynn et al., 2014).

Sustainability has the core value the sustainable development comprised by interconnection of ecology, culture, politics, and economics domains (James, et al., 2015). Ecology refers to the paradigm, knowledge, methods and procedures of contemporary ecological science (Kolasa & Pickett, 2005). Ecology is a multidimensional and complex concept that requires an interdisciplinary framework of analysis for its application in urban spaces (Pickett & Cadenasso, 2002). The dimensions of ecology are the notion, the models and the metaphors used to communicate assumptions, values and experiences (Cadenasso et al., 2006a)

Key Terms in this Chapter

Urban Ecology: Is a discipline whose object of study is the interrelationships between the inhabitants of an urban agglomeration and its multiple interactions with the environment.

Resilience: The word resilience refers to the ability to overcome critical moments and adapt after experiencing some unusual and unexpected situation. It also indicates return to normal.

Urban: Makes reference to that belonging to or relating to the city.

Land Use: Encompasses the management and modification of the natural environment to convert it into agricultural land: arable fields, grasslands; or human settlements. The term land use is also used to refer to the different land uses in zoning.

Urban Socio-Ecological Systems: Are a complex urban structures that can be analyzed considering the social subsystem and the ecological subsystem.

Eco-Urban: Those urban environments that are characterized by having a series of characteristics that define them as sustainable and ecological.

Green Resilience: Green resilience is based on the infrastructure of urban green areas applied to cities and is that they have the capacity to prepare, resist and recover from a crisis.

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